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Ritz-Carlton in U.S. Virgin Islands Fined $30K for Clean Water Violations

epa fines Ritz-Carlton Resort in St. Thomas

The luxurious Ritz-Carlton Resort in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands has agreed to pay a $30,000 fine to settle a case brought by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for violations of the Clean Water Act over nearly five years.

The prestigious beachfront resort failed to properly monitor and report on its discharges of treated wastewater from its operations as required by its EPA permit, the agency said. The lack of monitoring prevented the EPA from ensuring the resort’s compliance with clean water standards.

Along with the penalty, Ritz-Carlton will also undertake a $27,000 supplemental environmental project to install controls aimed at reducing pollutants entering Turquoise Bay and a wetland area near the property.

The oil and water separator and sediment traps are intended to minimize the discharge of oil, sediment and other contaminants that can be harmful to marine life and wildlife dependent on the bay and wetland ecosystem, the EPA said.

“When companies violate critical environmental laws, EPA will hold them accountable to protect public health and the environment,” said EPA Regional Administrator Lisa F. Garcia. She emphasized the importance of compliance monitoring under the Clean Water Act.

The agency said Ritz-Carlton’s permit violations over an extended period constituted significant non-compliance. Reporting requirements allow the EPA to ensure facilities are meeting clean water benchmarks.

With the settlement, Ritz-Carlton has addressed the compliance issues. The additional environmental controls are expected to benefit the waters near the popular resort.

Source: EPA Fines the Ritz-Carlton Resort on St. Thomas, USVI for Violations of the Clean Water Act

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